You see, the story of her birth actually starts a week before she was born. Exactly one week before her birth I got food poisoning.
I have only ever had this once before in my life and it wasn’t really that bad. I mean, I remember feeling crummy and pretty angry at that pizza place that used bad meat. But this? This was a whole other kettle of fish. This was bad.
We still have no idea how I got it. With gestational diabetes, there was not much fun eating going on in my life. In fact I remember being quite angry when I went to the doctor before I got sick and saw I gained a pound. I gained a pound eating lettuce? Pregnant or not, that seemed rather unfair. So there was no to little eating out going on at all.
Saving you the nasty details, I was sicker than sick. I was retaining nothing and dropped ten pounds in a matter of days. It was the first time in my life I can recall actually not wanting to drink anything, let alone eat. That was the scariest part. I would try and drink but I was so weak and sick that it was like torture.
I ended up getting an IV for dehydration. The baby was looking good on all the stress tests I was going to despite being ill. But the weight loss and inability to eat or drink was starting to scare me.
I was scheduled to be induced on the 16th, due to the gestational diabetes, but that was impossible. Yet, in the back of my head I kept thinking that eventually I was going to have to do this. I was so ill, and although getting better, I was worrying that this was all starting to have an effect her.
I called my doctor and we discussed my symptoms and decided that I should be induced on the 18th. I was scared out of my mind. I was so weak, how was I possibly going to be able to give birth!?! That was when I realized that I would probably have an epidural.
I had wanted to avoid that at all costs, considering that due to my low blood pressure, things get funky when I do have an epidural. After talking to one nurse, however, she told me there are things they can do to avoid my nearly passing out and needing oxygen. I didn’t even want to think about what drugs they were going to shoot me up with!
So at 5 AM Tony and I headed to the birth center where I have given birth to more than half of my babies. I was doing better but still not quite myself. Everything was a go. They checked and I was already 4 ½ cm. I can’t tell you how excited this made me. I mean, I was ecstatic. I had never gone into even natural birth that progressed! This was probably due to the fact that the night of the 16th I thought I was in labor. I knew it wasn’t true labor, though, because the pain was too strong too fast. I was unable to breath during the pains and basically scared everyone in the house. I wondered, too, if it just wasn’t food poisoning mocking me by giving me horrendous pains every 15 minutes like clockwork!
Now before I go on, please do not hate me. Think for a moment of the fact I had been in constant pain and misery for a week. That unable to eat or hardly drink, I was about to give birth. I think God might have taken a bit of pity on me.
All day I felt the contractions but they didn’t hurt. The nurses kept asking me if I even felt them. I shrugged with an “I guess so.” The weirdest part? Posy was facing the wrong way, so I was in back labor all day.
When I was about 6 cm (around 1 PM), the doctor came and broke my water. I told the nurse that maybe I should get that epidural. My husband was skeptical. Only a week ago I told Tony adamantly that I did NOT want at epidural. He shifted uncomfortably and the nurse sweetly suggested I take a shower.
This is a huge thing. I never got to move around during labor before. Only with my first but most of it I was confined to my bed. Not this time. They hooked me up so I was mobile and I believe this made all the difference.
I got into the shower, I didn’t want a bath because my thoughts were to let gravity help me. I stayed in that shower for 45 minutes. Tony kept poking his head into the bathroom asking me how I was with a side comment of “Wow, that was a good one.” He was not taking his eyes off the monitor.
After the 45 minutes, I started to wonder if perhaps I should go lay down before I couldn’t stand anymore. I could feel the contractions but, again, they didn’t really hurt. I psyched myself up in the shower too. I wasn’t going to get an epidural. I was going to do this without and offer it all up for my family and the struggles we have been fighting. Then I stepped out of the shower and...
I grabbed Tony around the neck as the nurse tried to dry me off. Forget modesty this was not what I was expecting! I couldn’t breathe it took me so much by surprise. They were telling me to breathe but all I could do was moan and hang on to Tony. He told me later he was getting frantic, knowing we had to get me to the bed, but I wouldn’t budge. He told me we needed to move but I insisted I needed to catch my breath. That was impossible of course because the contractions were one right on top of the other.
I struggled to make one step towards the bathroom door and that was when my eyes bulged out of my head and I proclaimed, “I HAVE TO PUSH!”
Everything happened at once. I recall the nurse literally grabbing me and pushing me to the bed, with her hand between my legs in case the baby fell out or something. The doctor, again by some sort of miracle, walked in at that moment. I was on the bed but I wasn’t pushing no matter how bad I wanted to because they hadn’t checked me. Shouldn’t they check to make sure I was 10 cm? I was making a raucous, which I never do… well, in labor... but I was trying not to push.
The doctor finally told me to go ahead and push. I gave a little push because they still hadn’t checked to see if I was 10 cm. I mean, I've done this a few times and generally there is a procedure with these things. But they insisted I give it my all. The doctor asked Tony if he wanted to catch the baby, but there was no way I was letting go of his hand. I could squeeze that all I wanted and not feel guilty about hurting him. Those sweet nurses didn't deserve my vise like grip. I was not letting Tony go anywhere.
Only a few pushes and our sweet little Posy was here at 1:55 PM. Once I put my heart into the pushing it was fast and the nurse actually had to help the doctor catch her! Everything went quickly and we were soon left alone with our baby, to cuddle and nurse her for the first time.
She weighed 7lbs 13 ounces, was 19 inches long, and had a 14-inch head. Typical for this family!
We have since had a bit of trouble with nursing but it is getting better. Her weight dropped significantly after birth and we were afraid I would have to supplement. Due to the food poisoning my body was weak and had very little to give. But, luckily, after birth my appetite came back full force. The pediatrician was actually surprised considering what I had been through that my milk came in as soon as it did. He told me to eat, nurse, eat, nurse, and then eat some more. Carbo-load like a football player about to play the Super Bowl, basically. Tony stopped at a New York style pizzeria on the way home and got me a huge slice of Hawaiian and a Coke. Next day she had gained a whole 4 ounces!
We are still fighting a bit of an uphill battle. Tony actually had to leave the hospital on the day she was born to take Tiger to the doctor. He had pink eye. Can you believe it? And then a cold started its way through the house and is not wanting to let go. I am focusing on trying to heal from everything. It is going slowly but surely!
Well, perfect time. Posy has awoken. She is sitting next to me with her fluff of black hair and what appears to be blue eyes, which will most likely turn hazel before her first birthday. Time to nurse and then enjoy a bath!